Sunday, August 8, 2010

What goes around, comes around

Very frustrating day of phone calls. It kicked off with a call about a cat whose owner had got her via the Preloved website. I'm sure she took the cat on with the best of intentions, but the words: "I rescued her from someone who didn't want her and she was in a terrible state," always make my heart sink. Typically the rescuer initially assumes that all the animal needs is feeding up a bit and equally typically it turns out that the previous owner was probably getting rid of it because they couldn't afford the vet bills. (Incidentally the man who bred puppies from a "rescued" bitch in the Panorama program probably got her in this way rather than from a rescue charity).

Late morning produced someone who'd bought a rabbit from a pet shop a few weeks ago; found "a hole" in its leg a few days later and after several days of home remedies decided the rabbit was ill enough to need a vet. Of course by this time every local vet was closed except for the premium-rate out of hours service. From his description I think the rabbit had probably been fighting with un-neutered litter mates and the "hole" was caused by a bite abscess bursting. All I could suggest was that he should ask the pet shop to fund some of the cost of treatment and that he should contact the RSPCA National Control Centre in the hope that they might be able to put some pressure to bear on the shop.

Closed the shop at 5, cashed up and staggered home, then to the supermarket for some food to keep me going over Sunday, just in time to get the latest call while I was browsing the veg. aisle. Four 9 week old puppies, the result of an accidental mating, and all with diarrhoea. On the plus side the owner had got them registered at our clinic on Thursday, so I could put him through to our veterinary provider. Also (for a change!) the pups were cocker spaniels, not more staffys, so if they can get over their digestive problems they ought to find decent homes.

Preloved and Gumtree seem to be getting more and more of a problem in terms of encouraging people to get animals they can't really afford/cope with. It's not easy to see what the solution might be as in some ways it's a good thing if owners rehome unwanted pets themselves rather than expecting animal charities to take them.

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